About 45000 descendants qualified for Indian Act status in Canada

About 45,000 First Nations descendants are eligible for Indian Act status under a new law that went into effect this week.

The descendants were denied status because their grandmothers married non-Native men. The provision was found to be unconstitutional in McIvor v. Canada, a case from British Columbia.

The new law, Gender Equity in Indian Registration Act, amends the Indian Act to correct the problem. It went into effect on Monday, opening services, benefits and other programs to an estimated 45,000 descendants.

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